Intestinal irony: how probiotic bacteria outcompete bad bugs

Cell Host Microbe. 2013 Jul 17;14(1):3-4. doi: 10.1016/j.chom.2013.07.003.


In this issue of Cell Host & Microbe, Deriu et al. present a mechanistic explanation underlying the benefits of certain probiotic bacteria. Intestinal bacteria compete for the essential nutrient iron, leading to replacement of pathogenic Salmonella by the probiotic Escherichia coli Nissle, which is better equipped with iron acquisition systems, and resolution of infectious colitis.

Publication types

  • Comment

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Colitis / drug therapy*
  • Escherichia coli / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intestines / microbiology*
  • Iron / metabolism*
  • Probiotics / therapeutic use*
  • Salmonella Infections / microbiology*
  • Salmonella typhimurium / growth & development*
  • Salmonella typhimurium / metabolism*


  • Iron